Blue Jays trade rumors: Market about to boom, Fiers a target


The Toronto Blue Jays reportedly continue to push hard for an impact starting pitcher ahead of the July 31st trade deadline. Houston’s addition of Scott Kazmir from the Oakland A’s on Thursday set the table, and the reported trade of Johnny Cueto to the Kansas City Royals earlier today (although there are some conflicting reports) should cause the market to finally burst. According to Shi Davidi, the Blue Jays were involved in Cueto negotiations at some level, but wisely balked at their asking price.

 The dominos could continue to fall shortly with Cole Hamels of the Philadelphia Phillies being dealt after throwing a no-hitter in what was likely his final start with the organization. This presents a situation for the Blue Jays that will toe the line between danger and reward. The market is set to unfold very quickly, so they must pick the right time to strike.

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General manager Alex Anthopoulos now has his chance to play with the big boys. For all the fireworks he’s set off in past offseasons, he’s now under the gun and working against the clock with a limited pool of potential options. Strike too early and he may risk missing a greater deal later in the week. Wait to strike at the stroke of midnight, and he may be left without a dancing partner.

The one target emerging from today that Ken Rosenthal separates from the usual deadline fluff links is Mike Fiers of the Milwaukee Brewers. We profiled Fiers here earlier in the week, noting that one of his most attractive qualities is the affordable team control that he offers. The 30-year old righty makes just (just?) $512,500 in 2015, a number not likely to skyrocket as he is not arbitration eligible until 2017 with his earliest free agent season being 2020.

The Brewers seem determined to shed salary ahead of the deadline as well, so perhaps a potential Fiers deal would expand into multiple players and allow the Blue Jays to lessen their prospect package by taking on some level of financial responsibility.

We can add to Rosenthal’s list, of course, with names like Miami’s Mat Latos and San Diego’s James Shields. The two most recurring names at this time appear to be Samardzija and Fiers, however, with Samardzija next scheduled to start on Tuesday with Fiers on Wednesday. The week ahead will be a memorable one, for better or for worse, and we’ll have all the deadline coverage you need right here at Jays Journal.

Next: Is Alex Anthopoulos being held back by ownership?

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